SOMETHING TO DIE FOR by Travis Hunter

SOMETHING TO DIE FOR

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KIRKUS REVIEW

From Hunter (A One Woman Man, 2004), the story of a young African-American man newly released from prison who discovers that the women in his life have fallen on hard times in his absence.

Wrongfully convicted of a double murder in a convenience store, gifted athlete Nasir Lassiter is sentenced to life, effectively kissing goodbye his promising basketball career. Framed for the killings by his childhood pal Savion, and embittered by news that his girlfriend Ayana plans to abort their child, he refuses to see his friends and family while incarcerated. Flash forward five years: Nasir is suddenly released, his sentence overturned. He returns home to find not only that his once elegant mother Marcy has become a drug addict, but that Ayana kept their baby. Determined to give her daughter a better life, Ayana now lives in one of Atlanta’s toniest neighborhoods with the dangerously jealous but wealthy businessman Alonzo—pining all the while for Nasir. Nasir never stopped loving Ayana either, and sets out to makes things right for his family. But as happy as she is to have her son home, Marcy finds herself unable to shake her heroin habit. In search of a fix, she runs away from the fancy hotel Nasir puts her up in, forcing Nasir to give chase before she does something desperate. Ayana, for her part, realizes what a mistake she has made with the volatile Alonzo, but not before he hits her and issues some vague threats. Beleaguered Nasir also has to deal with Savion, and starts by beating him up in front of the entire community, leaving his old friend just able-bodied enough to cause more problems.

Clichéd melodrama showing one man’s difficulties in ending a cycle of violence.

Pub Date: Oct. 24th, 2006
ISBN: 0-345-48167-4
Page count: 272pp
Publisher: One World/Random House
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1st, 2006